December 02, 2010

Just in case...

I decided to make a Christmas List in case anyone out there had some extra money that they would like to spend on me, so instead I'll call it an In My Wildest Dreams List.

1.  an iPad
2.  an iPhone
3.  a Flip video camera
4.  a jewelry box
5.  jewelry for the jewelry box
6.  clothing, shoes and bags (or gift cards to go shopping)
7.  a serger (sewing machine)

Of course I would also love a job for Jasey.  Money for Jasey's schooling, a part time daycare for AJ and dance classes for myself.

Thank you

December 01, 2010


Is it really December 1st already!?  Three and a half weeks till Christmas!  Even though it isn't going to be the most grandiose Christmas I am still super excited.  I've been getting a few things for the past couple months that I wanted to get the kids, I've already given Jasey's mom a list of ideas and my mom and I went out yesterday and got things for the kids from my mom.  So essentially Christmas is done!  Decorating tomorrow, getting a tree on Sunday, hopefully taking the kids to see Santa next week.  Love it!

November 30, 2010

Holiday Cards...Shutterfly!

Last year was our first year as a family of four so instead of a generic boxed card we decided to do a more personalized family photocard.  We had fun picking our clothes so we would coordinate but not be matchy-matchy.  My mom took the pictures for us and I had fun picking out which card I wanted to use.  It ended up being a very elegant card, everyone was dressed up and we were in front of the big Christmas Tree in the town center of our community.
I was already looking forward to doing a family photocard again this year but wasn't sure where to get the cards from, if I wanted to do a planned picture or a fun spur of the moment pic.  Then I read about a great promotion from Shutterfly on another blog I read.  If I blog about their promotion then I get 50 free holiday cards and you can get them too, just by blogging about it!   I went to the site and took a look around.  I got a little side tracked at first and found myself looking at all the calendars.  I'm a sucker for a calendar, I guess it's the mom in me.  And, if I can make it my own by adding pictures of the kids and our family, PERFECT!  What a great gift for grandparents!  Next, I moved onto the holiday cards to take a peak, such adorable designs!  I usually go for a Holiday card rather than a Christmas card because even though we celebrate Christmas we aren't religious and have friends of different beliefs so I like to get everyone in there with a Happy Holidays or Seasons Greetings.  I also like that they include the New Year because who doesn't get excited about the start of a New Year!
I'd been looking around for a while and the kids were starting to climb the walls so I figured I'd better head on over to the photocards.  I loved every other design I looked at but soon I found my hands down favorite card.  It has a cute little snowman on it, I love snowmen!  Must be the snow deprived Floridian in me.  So, I had found my card but was still unsure about what to do for the picture to go in it.  We were going out of town for Thanksgiving so I figured I would just forget about it for now and decide when we got back.  What do you know, as I was going through my pics from the trip I found the picture that I am going to use for the cards!  The kids aren't wearing the shirts I got them for pictures and Jasey and I don't coordinate at all but the picture is perfect!  It's as if it was meant to be, all the pieces just fell into place.  And, now I can use the kids clothes for their Santa pictures!  Now excuse me I have to go order my holiday cards!

Thanksgiving Weekend Adventures...

We are in the process of rearranging the wireless internet connection at my moms house, and of course by 'we' I mean Jasey.  Everything is hooked up and working again, except for our computer which has a broken wireless card, we don't have the cash to fix it right now so we need a cable to hook it up, the one we have isn't long enough.  Anyway I am on Moms computer which means I don't have easy access to my pictures at the moment.  But I want to share the wonderful time we had for Thanksgiving.
We left early Tuesday morning to head up to Atlanta to visit with Marshall and Deri.  We were supposed to leave at midnight but not one of us remembered to set an alarm so Jasey and I woke up at 2:30, luckily I had already packed up the car.  We woke up mom got the kids ready and were out the door at 3:00, not bad.  Jasey, wonderful guy that he is, drove the whole way there so mom and I could sleep.  Stopped for breakfast a little more then half way, after the kids woke up and arrived in Atlanta at about 1:00.
We stayed at the Homewood Suites, which was right around the corner from Marshall's place, walking distance away.  We really liked the hotel, comfortable room, coffee and tea service all day and breakfast every morning.  Not having to make breakfast every morning, now that is a vacation to me!
It was such a relaxing time.  Tuesday we went to Marshall's and just hung out.  Wednesday we went to breakfast at Rise-N-Dine, did some shopping and after Deri got out of work we all headed to the Georgia Aquarium.  It was so much better then I was expecting it to be, not the Aquarium really but the time we spent there.  Ryan was happy in her stroller looking around, AJ wasn't throwing temper tantrums.  I was thinking that it would be pushing it if we were there for about 2 hours but we ended up being there for over 3 hours, it was awesome, such a great time!
Thursday of course was Thanksgiving.  Patrick drove over from Athens to spend the day and join us for dinner, which was nice since we hadn't seen him since Nana's funeral in May.  Everyone helped out with dinner prep, decorating and drink fetching.  It was the first year in about 10 years that I didn't cook Thanksgiving dinner and I was very thankful for that!
Friday was another full day.  We all piled in the car again and headed to Dahlonega, GA, about an hour north of Atlanta, to go hiking.  In Dahlonega we found an Irish pub to have a little lunch and drinks, walked around the town square, enjoyed the holiday decorations and got some chocolate.  Deri claims it was the best hiking trip she's ever been on!  From there we moved on to our our first actual reason for heading here.  Mining, we stopped at a place where you could mine for jewels or pan for gold, we decided to mine.  So they gave us buckets of dirt and showed us to the mining troughs, or whatever they are called.  We grabbed our screen boxes and went sifting trying to keep our hands warm, the water was freezing!  AJ and Ryan played, Deri checked out the donkeys, Jasey took pictures, mom and Marshall had a stone mining assembly line going and I stuck to my own bucket, I'm like that.  We laughed a lot and had a good time but here was one more stop before we headed back to Atlanta.  It was on to Amicalola Falls State Park.  We drove to the top of the falls had a look around and took a few pictures, then Jasey, mom, Deri and the kids drove back to the bottom and started walking up the trail.  Marshall and I stayed at the top and headed down the trail, I use the term 'trail' loosely here.  To climb down next to the falls you are walking down steps attached to the side of the mountain, a total of 604 to be exact.  The first 425 steps are all twisty and turny and crazy to look down on from the top, it's all sharp turns and weird angles.  There are usually no more then 2 to 8 steps at a time before you hit a tiny landing (sometimes barely enough room for one foot) and turn to go down more steps.  When you finish the first 425 you get to cross a bridge that goes right over the bottom of the main fall, it is an amazing site to look up and see.  Then you have to finish the rest of the steps, these not nearly as steep and finally a pathway that leads to the pool at the base of the fall.  Though don't be fool the pathway is not a whole lot easier then the steps, especially when it's rainy and the path is covered with a layer of dead leaves.  Marshall and I met up with everyone else on their way up, took some pictures together and headed back to the car for our ride back to Atlanta.  The next day we packed up, checked out and headed to Marshall and Deri's to have a Thanksgiving Leftovers Brunch before getting on the road.  Potato pancakes, eggs, turkey and mimosas, mmmmm.
I drove the first leg heading home and hit most of the traffic then, which luckily wasn't much.  Jasey finished the trip home and we got in at 11:30 at night.  It was quite a shock getting out of the car to muggy mid 70's weather considering when we got int he car that morning it was a crisp, clear 32 degrees.
All in all we had a great time and I was so thankful to be able to spend such a relaxing holiday with all the people that mean the most to me.

I will get some pictures up as soon as I can!

November 20, 2010

I just wanted to share some random pics since I haven't posted any lately.

He insisted on a band-aid, it was the only way we could take his picture.

Mowing the lawn.  He is such a big helper.

I was getting some 1 year pics and the wind started blowing through the trees, she was in awe.

Kirby starting to become an adult puppy, he's almost 4!

Our 1 year old on her birthday.  "Today, i eat cake - yum yum"

Her first time eating cake, of course she liked it!

Their first pumpkin patch together!

AJ decided to help Ryan out with her cake 

Flowers and Bugs Birthday

Spookyville at the Fair Grounds
AJ was Buzz Lightyear (of course) Ryan was a chipmunk

AJ loves tractors!

Now no one can say I haven't posted any recent pics.  I'll try and be more organized next time though!

November 19, 2010

I love my babies...

I love babies, that really isn't a secret, but I don't just love them in the babies are so cute and soft, kind of way.  Of course, they are cute and there really in nothing in the world softer then a new babies cheeks.  Either pair.  There are so many things that make babies, of all ages, wonderful.  Although, there is one thing better then babies...your own babies.

I love...
Your newborn squishing into the tiniest ball on your shoulder and snuggling into your neck.  
Kissing the palms of those chubby little hands.  (Even when one of the babies is three and a half.)
The giggles of anticipation when they know you are going to tickle them again.
Chubby Cheekys.  Luckily I was blessed with two chunkers that have cheeks for days.
The crazy hair, bleary eyed, smile on their faces when they see you for the first time in the morning.
Watching them imitate something you do everyday.
Hearing the sounds of ma-ma and da-da for the first time.
Waking up in the morning to find them snuggled up next to you.
The wonder in their eyes when they see things like a tree blowing in the breeze.

Oh goodness I could go on forever.  That doesn't even begin to put a dent in what I love about babies and my children specifically.

simple and extraordinary...

Almost every day I watch AJ playing or just walking around and I think "I can't believe how big he is".  He is such a big boy, a little man, a big brother and to this day completely amazing.  I constantly have to remind myself that he is not even 4 yet, there is still so much for him to learn.  He has come so far and seems so much older.  He has really gotten into play acting.  He plays with his little people and figures and pretends they are blasting off into outer space or going to rescue someone from a fire.  He tells me that I am in trouble and he is going to rescue me or pretends that he is a gate keeper letting Kirby pass after the gate opens.  I like that he is so interested in helping, though he does still pretend to be 'the bad guy' sometimes.

This morning Ryan was supposed to be napping, instead she was standing in her crib, without any support, clapping her hands.  So I started clapping with her and said "yeaaa!".  She stopped clapping, laughed and put her hands to her side, still standing.  I stopped too.  She giggled and started clapping again, so I did too.  She stopped and laughed.  We went back and forth like this for a couple minutes, each time she would laugh harder and harder until she threw herself down to her mattress and started playing peek-a-boo, which really gets her going.  It is so cute that something as simple as clapping her hands and getting mommy to play along was such a delightful game.

Every time I see that simple joy in either of their eyes I step back and remind myself, yet again, of how simple it is to be happy.  One child is happy clapping her hands and laughing with mommy and another is happy because mommy helped him out of the mud puddle that developed in the middle of the living room.  I am happy to be there for both of them but I need to remember to also be happy for myself.  It can be so simple, you just need to find your own reason to laugh or game of pretend.

November 16, 2010

Mommy Ramblings...

I am such a moocher when it comes to blogging, I have so many thoughts about things to write about but when I sit down to do it they all disappear.  Then as I read others blogs I think 'hey I have some thoughts on that or my own spin on that subject', so here is one.  My friend Jenn's newest post about becoming a mom got me thinking.

I had my first kid before quite a few of my friends and family, actually my second came along before most of them, too.  That is far from saying I am an expert, but there of course are some bits of wisdom that I can pass on and am always very open and willing to be as straight forward and answer any questions that anyone has.  A few mommies-to-be took me up on some of this advice.  I would answer their questions and go on little side ramblings that I hoped would be helpful but never wanted to ramble too much.  Some mommies, I knew might scare, which is not something I wanted to be responsible for.  Others appreciated the info but I knew they also wanted to experience things for themselves so I wouldn't reveal too much.  I would listen to their ideas and thoughts of how it was and how it would be but didn't want to sound like I was preaching so wouldn't offer info unless I was asked.  I always hoped some would ask more questions, but knew I shouldn't push it.

I talk to those new mommies now and they tell me their stories like I'm not a mom myself and I think 'yeah, I know, I was just there'.  I don't shake my head and mutter 'see I told you', or stare at them in disbelief and say 'are you freaking joking me, you think it was easy for me', even though sometimes that is exactly what I want to do.  Everyone handles things in a different way, a way that seems right to them at the time.  You do what you think is best, the key word of course being 'think'.  Because even the second time around what worked last time and you 'think' will work again, won't.  These are all things that have to be figured out by trial and error, like everything else in life.

Not including my own, I have attended two births.  I was there when my youngest cousin was born and was also present when my best friend gave birth to her second daughter.  As long as I can remember I've wanted children.  I didn't just want to have a baby.  I wanted the whole experience.  From finding out I was pregnant and watching my body grow, to experiencing the pains of labor, knowing that my body was doing what it was meant to do as a woman, to becoming a parent and growing with my child watching them become a person I helped mold.  To me that was what having a baby meant.  Even after seeing first hand, at the age of 12, what giving birth was, I still wanted to experience it all and wasn't one bit afraid.

I knew I could do it, as I said this is what my body was meant to do.   I had the picture in my mind how it would happen (with variations of course, I wasn't a total fruitcake).  Though when the time came, nothing happened.  Next thing I knew I was having a c-section.  It was difficult for me and took me a long time to come to terms with the fact that I would never experience labor, which was something that I always wanted and for a while it felt like I had been denied something as a women.  I didn't really express these thoughts for a while, knowing that I had nothing to complain about.  Though I have always believed that if it's something that bothers you then it's something worth dealing with, not pushing to the back of your mind.

So I started talking about it and now I look at it like this...First, there was obviously some reason that I wasn't supposed to labor and I realize that I may never know what that reason is.  I also know that worst case scenario that reason could involve me not being here today.  Second,  I had no problem getting pregnant, pregnancy was relatively easy, delivery went well and I had no major problems after.  So if the only hiccup in the whole thing was that I had to have a c-section, I'll take it.  Third, a c-section is no easier then labor, sure the getting the baby out part may be quicker, but recovery sucks.  I'd say they are pretty even since both have their good and their bad points.  Lastly, and most importantly, I got two beautiful babies out of it and a heck of a scar to use as a major guilt trip on them in their teenage years when they give me crap.

It is so easy to feel completely alone as a mommy.  You wonder how so many moms manage to get up and shower and even put on lip gloss, when you are dealing with the newest stage of clingy, not eating, not sleeping, temper tantrum craziness.  So you avoid those put together mommies because you think that they will look down at you like you are a bad mom because you can't even handle your own kid.  I will tell you now that if any mother tries to claim that little Suzy or Tommy has been a breeze since day one, she's lying.  Plain and simple.  I had a pretty easy time with AJ as an infant but man am I paying for it now in the preschool age.  Ryan is not afraid to tell you what's what so I'm hoping that she will be a bit more mellow in the next couple years *fingers crossed*.  

I'm not a very big extrovert but even the occasional chat with a mom at the playground can make you feel so much better when you share stories and woes about how your 3 and a half year olds won't eat anything but cheese pizza and strawberries once a day or how they have the ability to throw a fit about what shirt they have to wear after you have given them the choice and they've changed their mind three times.  It's that small conversation that puts a smile on your face and has you wandering back to your purse to dig out your lip gloss.

Every story and experience is different.

November 03, 2010

Sometimes, you know...

I always strive to be happy and positive and optimistic.  I know that there is good with bad.  I understand that when I am having a bad day it is not the fault of other people.  I realize that there are things that annoy me but what difference does it really make.  Just because I have the ability to talk and the freedom to say what I am thinking doesn't make it right.  Sometimes I really want to tell someone to stuff it or to shout at another that I just don't care.  But, unlike those people that feel the need to say every little thing and think they have the right to be as rude as they can possibly be, I instead tell myself that they are not worth it.  The argument is not worth it.  The strain that I would put on myself and the neglect that my family would bare just so that I could get my two cents in is just not worth it.  If those people want to go out and say whatever they must say because they think it will make them feel better or show people how smart they are, then so be it.  I will not let the ignorance of other people, that mean nothing to me, bring me to a place that is not healthy.  I will continue to smile, say please and thank you and respect the beliefs of others even if they are not my own.  I only wish that those people that are so quick to judge and ridicule and lash out would take one moment before speaking to step back and think about what they are going to say.  Does it matter?  Will it hurt another person?  Will it actually change anything?  Are they showing the same consideration that they want for themselves?  Of course they don't ask themselves these questions because for the most part they don't care about the person standing across from them.  They don't care what the other person thinks or feels or has to say, as long as they get out their own opinion.  So even though I strive to be positive I, too, have moments of weakness that makes me want to spit out the thoughts in my head, I guess this was one of those times.  

I contemplated not even publishing this post, I feel like I am doing exactly what I just ranted about.  But doesn't that make me the person I hope others would be?  I'm actually thinking about what I'm saying and not just spewing out to intentionally harm someone.  I don't think it will change anything, but I'm not hurting anyone and I'm hoping it will get other people thinking.  I definitely took other peoples feelings into consideration or I wouldn't be writing this.  What do you think?

November 02, 2010

Daddy's on an 'adbenture'...

It is Tuesday and we have been without Jasey for 2 days.  He left Sunday morning for what AJ calls an 'adbenture', I think that's the Latino in him coming out.  You know, V's sounding like B's...  Anyway, Jasey is on a little road trip.  We were all going to go but after talking we agreed that Jasey going alone would be better for many different reasons.  There was going to be a lot of driving in not a lot of time.  Throw in two kids cooped up in car seats and hotel rooms and I could see my sanity flying straight out the window somewhere along Interstate 81, and that would just be no good.  So, I helped pack and load up and sent him on his way.  

He drove all day Sunday to be ready for his first stop on Monday in North Carolina.  Then he hopped back in the car for a short drive to Virginia.  After a long day there another longer drive awaits him as he crosses a time line and heads into Tennessee.  Next will be a drive into Georgia and a two night stay there before he finally heads back home on Friday.  That is four states in four days, not including Florida and other states that are driven through along the way.  Just thinking about it I am glad for the decision we made to leave me and the kids at home.  Of course I miss him and would love to be with him but I think he is, at this very moment, on that fateful drive from Virginia to Tennessee that would claim my sanity.  Instead I am calm, cool and collected, ahhhh.  Oh wait, excuse me while I stop the children from climbing the bookcases.  

The whole point of the trip is to visit schools that he is looking to attend.  He has already had interviews with some of the schools, as part of the application process.  During this trip he is meeting with students, having lunches with them and sitting in on classes.  He is also trying to get a general feel for each town and if it would be a good place for our family.  We will most likely be taking another trip in the coming months that focuses mostly on exploring the cities and towns that the schools are in.  Though as it stands the only thing we know for sure it that we will be moving sometime next summer.  If it will even be one of the four places that Jasey is visiting right now, I can't say 100%, though I would be willing to say it with 95% certainty.  

So we wait for daddy to return from his 'adbenture' and hope that it is a success and not too tiring, he has school the day after he returns and it's mid-term week.  We talk each night and get the scoop on how each others day went, that is if we aren't cut off by screaming kids or failing phone reception.  I even sent him pictures of the kids sleeping the first night, they were so cute I had to share.  To be honest, during the day there isn't much difference from when he's in town and at night i'm kinda digging sleeping sprawled out in the middle of the bed.  But, I will be very happy when Friday rolls around and drives up in front of the house.  Even better, I know the kids will be very happy to see him and there is nothing cuter then seeing kids excited about seeing their daddy.  

October 21, 2010

today, I eat cake...

There is no picture yet, but today Ryan is donning a cute little onesie that states "Today, I eat cake...yum, yum."  This is a very fitting statement for our 'petite little girl'.  She eats anything!  She is just getting her first molars in, yet a month ago the girl was eating steak.  Yes, steak!  As in sirloin, cooked on a grill...and chewing it with no molars, just gums.  But she loved it.  So I figured I would mark today, her first taste of cake, with the adorable little onesie that I found on  I am saving the "It's my First Birthday" onesie for her party on Sunday.  

So I guess typically this is the blog where I am supposed to remember my experience from a year ago and give a recount of the days happenings.  I don't usually think that way, to me it's more of a "holy crap has it really been a year!?!?!"  sort of recollection.  Of course I remember waiting in the hospital room and getting prepped for surgery.  I remember...well a lot more from Ryan's section then I do AJ's, in general.  I remember thinking how much tinier she looked than AJ did and wondering if I should make them weigh her again.  But again my main thought is "Oh my goodness, how can she already be a year old!?"  

There is so much that happens in the first year, it actually seems to go quicker then the 9 month pregnancy, which is another perfect example of how hormones and memory screw with you during these times so that all you can remember when it's all over are the good things and if you do remember the not so great parts you immediately think "well, I made it through so it couldn't have been that bad, lets have another baby"  and next thing you I'm not about to tell you that I am pregnant again.  Lets all remember that there is also a very active preschooler in the house.  Very active preschoolers are the best birth control since abstinence.   

Anyway back to Ryan turning one and wearing a cute little onesie saying "Today, I eat cake..yum, yum."  I certainly can't imagine my life without her.  She makes me smile when I think about her and laugh out loud when she smiles at me.  AJ started our family and Ryan came along to complete it.  I am so happy be a mommy to both of them.  Happy Birthday Ryan Addison.  

September 29, 2010

A Bit Of A Funk...

Hello again!  I have admittedly sucked at this blogging thing for the past few months.  Though I have come to realize that as much as I put on a happy face and a good front, I've fallen into a bit of a funk.  With everything that has been going on I would like to think that it's understandable but the happy go lucky person in me is angry at myself.  There is so much to be grateful for and so many things that could be going wrong that it seems very self defeating to let a bump in the road get me down.  I don't think most of you know what our bump consists of so let me give you a run down.

Earlier this year, around about June, things started changing at Jasey's job.  He was generally treated like scum off the street.  No recognition was given to the years and devotion he had given the company.  Ultimately, he was left without a job.  In those months we did a lot of talking, figuring and re-figuring, budgeting and re-budgeting.  Our final decision... move in with my mom and rent out our home.  So, the middle of August we packed up, moved in with mom and less then a month later had our home cleaned, painted and rented.  We have been in mom's house for a month and a half now (I can't believe it's been that long already) and everything is going good.

The upsides...AJ and Ryan have Momah around all the time, which is good for them and also good for my sanity at times.  Kids and dog have a huge yard to run around in now, something that Jasey and I always wished we had at the townhouse.  It was in the plans to move next year anyway (still not sure exactly when or where) and now we are mostly packed up so it should be an easier move when the time comes.  The best thing that has come out of the whole situation is that Jasey is no longer at that job.  Yes, it's not an absolute ideal situation but, I have wanted him out of there for so long that this is one of the best things that could have happened.  Jasey is as busy as ever but he now has time to concentrate on school, with the stress of the job he was having trouble focusing.  He also has time to buckle down and study for the GMATs which he now has a test date for taking.

The downsides...the biggest one of course is that we are not in our home.  We were there for three years, it was our first home.  AJ was only a few months when we moved in, he started walking and talking there.  We found out we were pregnant and Ryan was born when we lived there.  We celebrated birthdays, anniversaries and holidays.  We made friends, became a family and made a home.  Honestly, I can't think of any other actual downsides, there is just the overall feeling of funkiness.  Yes, money is tight, but I'm not a big spender.  Sure, it's tight living quarters, but it's not like I had 'no kid' time before.  I don't see Jasey all that much, but that certainly isn't anything new.

If I didn't know that there was a very good reason for all of this or if I was a pessimist then I would be in a very bad spot right now.  But I am an optimist and I know that, even though it may seem like a long way off, everything will pay off and every young family has to go through tough times to get to where they want to be.

I will leave you with some words of wisdom from Marshall's girlfriend, Deri..."I say if life is a road, then problems like this are the construction zones that fuck things up for a bit to make them better! So while this might be a difficult time, I believe it might just be the thing that makes life even better." 
I couldn't have said it better.  :)

August 06, 2010


So I know that I have been pretty absent for a while now.  I haven't even posted new pictures on the family site.  There isn't really much that I can say except, I just never thought it would come to this.  Oh I don't know where to begin or if I want to begin.  Don't worry everything is fine between Jasey and myself and the family is great.
I am always such a positive person and even this, I know, will pass and we will make it through.  Though, after today it's become so much harder to continue being optimistic.  I don't want to sit here and wallow, which I'm not doing, but dang it how can those freaking people be so...grrrrrrr!
The bright sides are shining in my face, I know they are there and I'm sure that knowledge is what is keeping me sane and focused at the moment, along with not wanting to stress Jasey out anymore then he is already.
I will explain in the future, but for now just know that it has been a very stressful couple months for us.  Things are happening, good and not so good.  We are hoping that it will start to work out soon.
Encouragement and happy thoughts are greatly appreciated along with your understanding about my lack of cheeriness.
In the words of Monty Python "Always look on the bright side of life"
Goodness knows I'm trying.

June 21, 2010

scary nights...

When you first announce you are pregnant, people are more then willing to tell you about the terrible morning sickness they had that lasted for months.  Thank you for the well wishes Mr. and Mrs. Stranger.

Then as you get bigger, the general public views you as a Good Luck Buddah who is just dying to have it's belly rubbed and more people start telling you about the horrible fifty-seven hour long labor they went through.  Thanks for that Mrs. Inappropriate Timing.

Of course, when the little one makes it's grand entrance you think that all of the random stranger comments will cease...and then you go to the grocery store for the first time with your new baby and run into that crazy old lady that feels like she has every right to touch your child's face and hands.  Uhhh, not so fast Mrs. Germ Spreading Granny.

The list goes on and on about what people will do and say to you when you are prego or have a little baby.    So, why is it that in all of these random ramblings by people I don't know did no one happen to mention one of the scariest (non-life threatening) events that could take place with my toddler?  It's not uncommon, but I'd never heard a thing about them, until after AJ had one and I researched them.

Night Terrors.

AJ had just turned 2 and the whole family had a very eventful day together.  AJ fell asleep early and had been down for a few hours.  Jasey and I were starting to call it a night, too.  Then out of no where AJ started screaming and crying.  Jasey got there first and said that AJ was standing on his bed staring at the wall screaming his head off.  He would kind of respond to us when we asked him a question, mostly by saying 'No!' and crying harder.  Then he started crying for mommy, so I stepped up and tried to calm him down and asking if he wanted some juice, he yelled 'No!' and then cried for mommy again...'I'm right here kiddo.'

Then we realized that he wasn't looking at us, he was looking past us, right through us.  He was completely glazed over, still screaming and by this time crying so hard that he couldn't breath.  I left him with Jasey and went and got some juice and the phone.  I was half way through dialing my mom, when I hung up and started to call the pediatricians office.  Halfway through that number I realized that it would be at least a half hour before they called me back and I was afraid that he was going to have a seizure or something.  I kept telling myself that he was OK, that he would calm down soon, that we were his parents and we could handle it.  Then I thought that I would never forgive myself if something happened to him and that if I was scared enough to think about it then it wasn't a silly thing to do and I grabbed the phone and started to dial 9-1-1.

I never finished dialing.  Just like that he stopped crying.  He was hiccuping and cuddling with Jasey and was even holding onto his juice cup.  He was responding to our questions with real answers and was looking at us right in the eyes.  I was still a bit in shock but totally relieved that he was OK.  Then the question of 'what in the heck just happened?' crept into our minds.  After settling him in to bed I immediately went downstairs and got on the computer.  I don't even remember what I googled but in the end came up with night terrors.

AJ has had a handful more since then, though none as scary as the first, I guess since I knew what it was this time around.  A few of the shorter ones were actually a bit on the amusing side.  One he was standing at the gate to his room just screaming 'NO!   NO!   NO!' right to my face, I just turned around and walked away.  The latest one he was standing on his headboard, behind his blinds and appeared to be attempting to climb out of his bedroom window.  But, by far, my favorite (is it bad that I have a favorite night terror) was during a nap time one day.  He had been asleep for a little while and I went in to check on him and cover him up.  As I was adjusting him he opened his eyes, reached up and grabbed the hair on the top of my head and started growling 'MOOOMMYYYY, MOOOMMYYY', and then let go and instantly feel back asleep.  It was very creepy, but it gave me a good giggle.

So now you have been forewarned about a scary thing called Night Terrors.  It's along the same lines of sleep walking.  It can happen if your child has missed a nap or is extremely tired.  It usually happens a couple hours after they have fallen asleep, when they are completing one sleep cycle and entering the next, they kind of get stuck between the two.  Do not attempt to wake, talk to or touch them, believe me I know this is hard and goes against all mothering instincts, but doing any of those things can prolong and worsen the situation.  The best things to do is try and make sure they are well rested throughout the day.  Check on them a couple hours after they have gone to sleep, adjust them to kind of make them stir but not wake them up.  If they do have a terror just watch them to make sure they don't hurt themselves since they may thrash or try to climb.

Hopefully if you ever have to deal with night terrors, this will prepare you a little bit and you won't be on the verge of calling 911 like I was!

Now I do realize that this post may bring me into line with the 'people' mentioned in the beginning, but since it was to make you aware of what may come, rather than scaring you poop-less or trying to touch you without your permission, I feel that this was more constructive rather then invasive.

June 16, 2010

The Green Bag Lady...

I started following a blog a couple years ago and have since become totally obsessed with it.  Theresa, the woman fronting this blog is awesome!  She has dubbed herself the Green Bag Lady.  A few years back she started making reusable shopping bags for herself, family and friends.  It has since turned into a weekend ritual for a group of ladies (and a few guys) known as the 'bagettes'.  Cute, right?!  When I started following, GBL had given away over 2000 bags, it is now over 10,000, woohoo!!  I checked in everyday to see what was going on and entered a giveaway, and I won bag!!!  Bag number 2945, seen here in AJ's 18 month old grasp  :)
I love to sew and I was very excited once I watched her video on how to make them, it was so easy!  Mom had given me a bunch of old fabric that she had and I immediately started sewing my little heart out, I made so many that I decided to for-go holiday cards and instead gave over 50 bags to family and friends.  Here is a picture of all the bags that got sent out.
I don't know how Theresa and the bagettes do it because I loved each bag that I made and wanted to keep everyone of them!  Jasey makes fun of me because I do have quite the stash of bags in my car!
I have given away other bags to random people that I meet in the local green market or at the grocery store.  I have also recently given bags to new friends and their families.  My aunt gave out about 10 of them to her music group and I am always making little bags to give gifts in, instead of buying paper gift wrapping of course!  (I now wish that I had taken the time to document each of them, but oh well!)  I also have a bag of bags of all different sizes in my car so that at any given moment I am prepared to share with an unsuspecting passerby!    

After winning my bag, I entered a few other freebies and have also entered some friends and family in giveaways for GBL bags.  I have become a GBL junkie!!!  I mean, come on, if I use the term Green Bag Lady so much that I have become accustomed to shortening it to GBL, I think it's safe to say I'm a junkie :)  These are the registered GBL bags, I gathered them all to take a picture, I'll give you a rundown starting from the left.  Ryan is # 8343, Jasey is #9170, AJ is # 9785, Andrea is #2945 and Jackie is # 3169, the blue fabric on the bottom is from the latest giveaway called Sew Mama Sew, where winners also receive a precut bag to sew and share with a friend, I sadly have not yet sewn it, but I will soon and will find the perfect person to pass it on to!
As I mentioned I also entered other freebies, there are four additional bags in the pic below, which are from those freebies.  I won the two bags on the left first, they are produce bags and have little ties to cinch up the bag so your apples don't go rolling around, trying to escape.  The green one actually has a small branch from our last christmas tree in it, which I keep in the car as a potpourri satchel.  The pink one is a gift bag and the last one is a mini-bag made by one of the bagettes with some larger scraps.  See...GBL junkie, thats me.  But wait we aren't done... 
I entered an Earthday giveaway, which I got some of you to also enter (I'm still waiting on pics!)  And because you all are so awesome and mentioned my name, I won a small prize pack!  Here is the fabric that Theresa kindly sent me, I told you she was awesome!!!  The gingham and polka dot fabric is oil cloth, I am using some to top my craft table (a nifty idea from the GBL herself) I will be sure to make a few bags with some of the other material, maybe for a little giveaway myself.  And I'm not sure about the rest...any ideas?
During the Earthday giveaway, Theresa linked all her blog followers over to a whole slew of organic fabric makers that were doing a bit of a giveaway themselves.  I went to each of the 12 participating companies and entered their individual contests.  What do you know, the lovely ladies at Cloud 9 Fabrics picked me and sent me 3 fat quarters of my choice of designs from their Beyond The Sea collection!  Here were my choices...Coral Weed, Sea Urchin and Sandpiper.  They are soft and bright and just oh so lovely!  
I'm glad I was able to share another of my favorite blogs with you and hope to share more in the future!  Now I have to go get my booty in gear and start sewing some more! 


May 27, 2010

3 Years...

I can hardly believe that AJ turned three this past Sunday. It's not an 'Oh my, where did the time go?' wonderment, or an 'I'm getting so old!' thought either. It's simply just a shock. He is no longer a little baby. He isn't even a toddler anymore. He is a little boy!!!

He had an early start to his birthday on the 14th, when the four of us drove up to Titusville to spend the day and watch the Shuttle Atlantis launch. For the next week and a half AJ asked me 10 times daily if it was his birthday and if he could have candles on his cake. I showed him the calendar, what day his birthday was and that it would be here soon.

The day before his birthday, we went to Jasey's moms house to celebrate with her. A yummy dinner, cake and gifts. It was wonderful and AJ was very excited that his birthday was finally here. Though I think he was a little suspicious because he knew that the day I had pointed to on the calendar that day wasn't the same day that I had told him his birthday was on, little smarty pants.

The next morning we headed to Calypso Bay, a little, kids water park. A few friends, who have kids around the same ages joined us at the park. A few hours of splashing, sliding and playing and the kids were pretty tuckered out, as well as the parents (a few of the parents were pretty sunburned too) AJ passed out in the car, just what we were hoping for.
My mom met us at our house and later a couple friends came over so the boys could play. AJ opened gifts and, of course, there was more cake.

A homemade, shuttle shaped cake! Since AJ has been so into rocket ships and enjoyed watching the shuttle launch so much I wanted to have a special cake for him. It was the first shaped cake I'd ever made and I had so much fun doing it!
He asked again this morning if we were going to have cake and a party for him, I guess I need to start planning for next year, any suggestions?

May 17, 2010

Meet the Fam...

So far you've only met my little family of four. I figured it was time for you to meet the people in my family that came before my husband and children. Though, considering that my mom has 7 siblings, I have 13 cousins and there are already 10+ kids in the next generation, it would take way to long to introduce you to everyone. So I am going to tell you about the two people that mean the most to me. My mother and my brother, of course!

This is Marshall, my big brother, by 3 and a half years. Growing up, I was the annoying little sister and he was the big brother I looked up to. He beat me up and made fun of me, I whined and complained. We joined forces and drove our parents crazy. I had a crush on one of his friends. I wanted to do everything just like him so that he would be proud of and like me. I loved him, he was my big brother. Now that we are adults we don't talk all the time, though I wish we did. I would love to call him everyday just to say 'Hi'. (Though, I would feel like that annoying little sister again)
LIfe is never boring with a person like Marshall around.

After graduating from high school, he moved to Atlanta to attend Georgia Tech, because he is a computer and math genius. A couple days before he left I was sitting in the living room at home when he turned on the stereo in his room and blasted a They Might Be Giants album. He wandered out of his room and stopped right in front of me, just looking at me for a second. Next thing I know he starts jumping around and dancing in the middle of the living room, with a big smile on his face. I cracked up laughing! Mom came into the room to see what I was laughing at, he stopped and just looked at mom but I couldn't stop laughing. Two more times this happened, he would dance until mom popped her head around the corner to see what was going on and he would stop. That is one of my favorite memories of him, and in a way I think it might have been his way of saying 'I love you and I'll miss you'
There are so many things about him that I love. His intelligence, reasoning and explanations always make me think, listen and want to hear more. I don't always follow what he is telling me and am grateful when he takes the time to re-explain something that I didn't understand the first time.
He is easily the funniest person that I know. It's not your everyday 'HaHa' or 'silly' funny, he isn't a stand-up comic kinda person, nor is he throwing out one liners all the time. He is all of that in one, mixed with a mind that never quits...only better.

While our relationship may have been pretty typical, Marshall was not. He was an interesting person to grow up with and I know that a lot of who I am now is because of him, all in a good way. :)
He is dating a wonderful woman, Deri. She brings out the best parts of Marshall and he always has a smile on his face when she is around. They fit together perfectly and she quickly stepped into our huge family and caught all of their hearts too. I can't wait to see what the future brings for the two of them. Maybe a few nieces and nephews for me...?
(here are Marshall and Deri with AJ and Ryan)
My mom, quite simply, I love that woman. She is my best friend and I never give her the recognition she deserves. She was always there when I was little. She drove on field trips and was a classroom mom. She religiously took me to dance classes and busted her butt backstage at every recital for 12 years. She was always in the stands at football games to watch me cheer and always at dance conventions to cheer for me. 
 (here she is at my wedding dancing with Troy, a groomsman)
We've done some wacky stuff over the years, dancing in the middle of an intersection while stopped at a red light. Discovering a new planet in our own living room and making friends with the 'Walnutians'. We've taken road trips and re-wired bathroom lights. We've laughed till we cried and cried till we laughed.
 (here we are playing in a tree that fell in her backyard during a hurricane)

In the last few years she has become something more then my mom and my friend. I got married and she became a confidant. She listens when I need to talk and gives advice when I don't know what to do. 
 (at my bachelorette party)
Then I had children, and she became Momah. She is always there and I can always rely on her when I am at my wits end. All I have to do is call and she knows by the sound of my voice that I am slowly going crazy. Just telling her "I can't take it" calms me down. She is always willing to lend a hand whether it's watching the kids so I can grocery shop or just stopping by so I can see another adult in my day. I am so grateful for her and everything that she does for us.
So there you have it, the two people in my life that have been there the longest. They have helped to mold me in to the 'special' person that I am today. I hope that they know how much they mean to me.

May 15, 2010

Shuttle Atlantis

Friday, Jasey took the day off of work (an amazing event in it's self), the four of us hopped in the car and drove to Titusville to watch the final launching of the Shuttle Atlantis. The timing for it was perfect, AJ is really into rocket ships and his birthday is a little over a week away. We figured a little trip to see a real life rocket would be a fun pre-birthday surprise. You can see the launch pad between Jasey and me. We were 12 miles away and had a great view.

We got to Titusville about 3 hours before the launch, our only plan was to find a place along the 5 mile stretch of road running along the river to set up camp and wait for the main event. We found a great spot right on the water under a couple palm trees so we had some shade for Ryan, it was perfect! Although, AJ discovered why it is not smart to run your hands up and down a palm tree trunk, poor guy got splinters in both hands. :(

It was great spot and we were surrounded by lots of other people, from different states and a few from different countries, that had come to watch the shuttle.

Our perfect spot also happened to be right next to a restaurant. We had stopped and grabbed lunch on our way so we didn't need food but as an added bonus this restaurant was serving margaritas for $2.50 and a server was even coming out into the crowd and taking margarita orders! Jasey and I decided to partake in the tequila and lime concoctions. Yummy!

AJ had a special treat too, a huge chocolate milk all to himself while we settled in and got ready for the final countdown. We really did have an absolutely perfect view.

Ryan was very excited. She actually did great all day and ended up falling asleep not long before the launch, though the rumbling woke her up so she technically didn't miss it.

AJ was starting to get a little antsy and we had to keep reminding him that we were about to see a rocket ship, then everyone started counting. 10, 9, 8, 7, soon as he heard the crowd he climbed up in daddy's lap and looked out over the water, he knew what was coming.

5, 4, 3, 2, 1...We have lift off

It was amazing to see and and not as loud as we were expecting. Though, that worked out well since we didn't know how Ryan would react to the noise. AJ, despite being tired, having splinters in his hands and getting bit by an unidentified insect, had a great time and was very excited that he got to see a "rocket ship blast off to the moon in outer space" Since being home he has watched the launch no less then 20 times on the computer, over and over and over again.

It was a first for both Jasey and myself and we've already talked about going again, we would love to see a launch when it's dark. Maybe one of the last two, scheduled later this year, will be at night or in the early morning.
I know AJ is still young but I hope that this is something that he remembers when he is older. It was definitely a great day and a fun family trip. We are so glad we went!

Also, AJ and Ryan will have pictures to prove that they were there! Including this one that shows what a great time that AJ had :)